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Carole Baskin Tricked Into Prank Interview With Jimmy Fallon

Tiger King’s Carole Baskin thought she was doing one of her first national TV interviews on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon last week — but the Q&A on Zoom was actually a prank.

Famous YouTubers Josh Pieters and Archie Manners posted Baskin’s interview online Sunday afternoon explaining how they got Baskin to believe it was real.

Other notable victims of schemes from the YouTubers include far-right British pundit Katie Hopkins and crooner Craig David

The pandemic has prompted most late night talk show hosts to conduct their nightly shows at home via Zoom, and Fallon most notably was one of the first to do it. He’s made headlines for his kids’ frequent appearances on the show as he’s brought on big name guests like Will Ferrell and Gigi Hadid.

Pieters and Manners used these uncertain times to act as a third party company hired by The Tonight Show to interview guests for Fallon’s Zoom production. Baskin originally expressed reluctance to do the interview through a spokesperson, citing her portrayal in the documentary as a reason why. She has mostly stayed away from interviews since the airing of the documentary, claiming the Tiger King creators had “betrayed [her] trust.”

The pranksters emailed back saying they wouldn’t ask about Tiger King, just about cats. Pieters and Manners used audio clips from interviews of Fallon using the word “cats.” Baskin agreed to the interview after they negotiated a contract with Howard Baskin, Carole’s husband.

The fake Fallon only asked Baskin simple questions — like what she was up to these days and any charity she wanted to highlight. At one point, one of the producers asked Baskin if she could wear one of her flower crowns, which she coincidentally had right next to her.

Baskin never had her Punk’d moment in the fake interview, and has yet to acknowledge the prank since its reveal, but the video did accumulate 1.5 million views in its first 24 hours.

The two claim it is Baskin’s first interview since Tiger King, which is untrue — The Tampa Bay Times interviewed the Florida native in early April — but it’s still worth watching Carole and Howard fall for the hoax.

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